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Why Does My Tooth Hurt? 5 Possible Answers

If you are experiencing tooth or gum pain, it could be an indication of a more serious underlying issue. Here, our Calgary dentists explain 5 possible causes of tooth pain and what you can do about it.

What causes tooth pain & gum pain?

No matter the intensity of your toothache, it is important to seek a dentist's diagnosis to determine the root cause promptly. While maintaining a thorough oral hygiene routine can often prevent toothaches and discomfort, various factors can contribute to tooth or gum pain, including the following:

Cavity/Tooth Decay

Though cavities often happen gradually, pain can occur suddenly. This should be taken care of as soon as possible to prevent an infection takes hold.

Grinding, Trauma or Injury

Whether you grind your teeth in your sleep and gradually wear them down, or you sustain an injury in some more immediate way, for instance while playing sports, a fractured or damaged tooth can be very painful – don’t ignore it. Your dentist may recommend treating it with a filling, crown or bonding.

Grinding may also cause tooth sensitivity issues. Ask your dentist for tips on how to break this harmful habit.

Wisdom Teeth

Impacted wisdom teeth can cause significant pain as they exert pressure on the surrounding teeth or become infected. In addition, they can result in secondary complications such as tooth damage and crowding when there is insufficient space for them to erupt correctly.

Abscessed Tooth

Bacterial infections may lead to pockets filled with pus. This not only creates painful sensitivity, but can also develop into a more serious, or even life-threatening, condition.

Gum Disease

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, can vary in severity from mild (gingivitis) to moderate and severe stages. In the early stages, your dentist may address gingivitis by performing scaling and root planing, which involves the removal of plaque buildup along the gum line.

In cases where gum disease has progressed significantly, more immediate measures may be required. This can include treatments such as root canal therapy, administration of antibiotics, and possibly surgery to address the severe gum disease.

Other Potential Causes

We should note that some people experience temporary tooth sensitivity, which doesn’t necessarily indicate a serious problem.

Using toothpaste made for sensitive teeth may help. You should also attempt to avoid eating extremely hot or cold food and drinks until the sensitivity goes away.

If you notice ongoing sensitivity (for more than a couple of days), this may be cause for more serious concern, such as gum recession, and you should see your dentist.

Sometimes, the source of tooth pain may not originate from within the mouth. Conditions such as viral or sinus infections, vitamin deficiencies, headaches, or colds can produce symptoms that resemble a toothache.

Nevertheless, it is important to consult your dentist and not self-diagnose or disregard the pain, as doing so could lead to more serious problems. Dental pain typically does not resolve on its own and should be evaluated by a dental professional.

What Helps Tooth Pain?

If you are wondering how to relieve tooth pain, the first and most obvious answer is to make an appointment with your dentist so that the issue can be diagnosed and treated.

In the meantime, there are a few home remedies for tooth pain you can try. Apply an ice pack or taking an over-the-counter pain medication to reduce pain and inflammation. In some cases, a saltwater rinse can also help soothe and relieve tooth pain.

If you are experiencing toothaches or gum pain, contact our Calgary dentists to book an appointment today.

(403) 284-3341 Contact